Private, nonprofit, and accredited, Concordia University-Portland has been developing leaders since 1905. We look for EdS candidates who are ready to build on their skills, take charge, and inspire ethical change in educational settings.

For questions about our EdS concentrations, start dates, application criteria, funding opportunities, career outcomes, and more, connect with an enrollment specialist or admission counselor now. If you’re ready now, go ahead and apply. (Applying is free and takes just a few minutes.)


If you share our belief that education can change the world, apply today.

Admission Requirements

The following requirements are for U.S. citizens and permanent residents applying to Concordia’s College of Education programs. Chat with an enrollment specialist or admissions counselor for full details.

  • Doctorate of Education

Education Specialist (EdS)

  • Completed online application

  • Applicants must have earned a GPA of 3.0 or higher in a master’s degree program from a regionally accredited institution.

  • Official transcripts from your graduate degree-granting institution and any post-graduate coursework. For your convenience, please sign the transcript release form if you would like Concordia University−Portland to request official transcripts on your behalf.

  • Current résumé including references (please explain your relationship with the references and include their contact information).

  • Letter of Intent, no more than two pages, citing evidence as to why you should be admitted to the education specialist program, including reasons why you chose Concordia University and illustrating your commitment to degree completion.

Please make sure your first and last names appear on all of your application materials. You may submit your materials (preferably in one packet) by one of the following methods:

Online EdS applicants:

  • Complete the application online and then your enrollment specialist will email you the appropriate documents to complete.

  • Transcripts: To submit official or unofficial transcripts use one of the following methods:

On campus EdS applicants:

  • Scan and email to

  • Fax to 503-280- 8531

  • The Office of Admission
    Concordia University
    2811 NE Holman St.
    Portland, OR 97211-6099

Concordia University must receive all items from the applicant before their application will be considered for review, including transcripts. We encourage you to carefully proofread your materials for grammatical, citation, spelling and formatting errors before submitting them for review.

If You Don't Meet Certain Requirements:

Certain criteria and GPA requirements vary by program. Find out from an enrollment specialist now if you qualify for your program, or if you qualify for conditional admission, which may simply require additional materials.

If You’re Transferring In From Another University:

We want to help you get the most of out of the credits you’ve already earned. Connect with an enrollment specialist or admissions counselor now to discuss the transfer credit policies specific to the program that interests you.

The level of support exceeded my expectations. I recommend this program to everyone.

Monique Woodley, '18
EdD in Educational Administration


Concordia accepts students from around the globe.

This criteria is for international students (anyone who will or is temporarily residing in the United States on an F-1 student visa) who would like to be considered for admission into our EdS programs.

The same requirements as U.S. citizens/permanent residents, plus the following additions:

  • Proof of a bachelor’s or master’s degree that is recognized by the Ministry of Education from that country and equivalent to a bachelor's or master's degree earned in the United States

Score requirements for the EdS program:

  • TOEFL: Internet-based score - 100; paper-based score – 600

Exception: International students whose undergraduate education took place in Australia, Canada (English-speaking provinces), United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, or the U.S. are exempt from this requirement. Students born in one of these countries yet educated elsewhere are still required to satisfy the English proficiency requirement.

International students enrolled in an online program will not be issued an I-20 and will not be eligible to receive an F-1 student visa to study in the United States. Currently, international students may only complete the doctorate program in the online format.

An evaluation may be obtained from one of the following institutions. Please note that a comprehensive or course-by-course report is required.

Academic Credentials Evaluation Institute, Inc. (ACEI)

P.O. Box 6908
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
Phone: 310-275-3530 or 800-234-1597
Fax: 310-275-3528

Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. (ECE)

P.O. Box 92970
Milwaukee, WI 53202-0970
Phone: 414-289-3400
Fax: 414-289-3411

Foundation for International Services, Inc. (FIS)

505 5th Avenue South, Suite 101
Edmonds, WA 98020
Phone: 425-248-2255
Fax: 425-248-2262

World Education Services, Inc. (WES)

P.O. Box 5087
Bowling Green Station
New York, NY 10274-5087
Phone: 212-966-6311
Fax: 212-739-6100

Concordia took their dedication to me as a student to the next level.

Lisa Fee, '17
EdD in Higher Education


Check out the answers to our most common FAQs

What is the difference between an EdD and an EdS?
  • Shorter time to completion
  • An EdS degree may be earned in less than two years while earning an EdD takes at least three years

  • No dissertation requirement
  • Advance your knowledge, skills, and leadership abilities without the degree requirement of publishing a dissertation

  • Fewer required courses
  • Though much of the coursework is the same, the following courses are not required for an EdS degree:

    • EDDR 706 Research Writing - Literature Search
    • EDDR 707 Research Writing – Literature Review
    • EDDR 708 Prospectus Writing – Quantitative
    • EDDR 709 Prospectus Writing – Qualitative
    • EDDR 798 Dissertation

    (EdS candidates will take EDDR 797 Education Specialist Capstone in place of EDDR 798)

Who might consider an EdS degree?

Administrators in schools, churches, and organizations; teacher leaders; community leaders in organizations that offer educational services, and other specialists may be interested in earning a doctorate in education.

What can I do with an EdS?

People who enroll in Concordia’s Education Specialist program do so for a variety of reasons. These include (a) gaining additional skills and knowledge to become stronger and more creative leaders in their organization (department chairs, directors of curriculum or policy, district-level leadership positions), (b) fulfilling a personal goal of earning a terminal degree in their field, (c) completing an education requirement for a position in their district or organization that requires a terminal degree, and (d) increasing their salary potential in their district or organization’s compensation scale.

Some examples of possible roles include:

  • Department Head
  • Instructional Coach
  • Public Sector Program Management
  • NGO Leadership/Ownership
  • Intercollegiate Athletics Administration
  • Admissions Leadership and Management
  • Professional Development and Consulting
  • Religious Institution Leadership and Management

Regardless of the exact position one may seek or acquire as a result of earning an EdS, those who pursue the degree are passionate about the future of education and how they will fit into that future.

How long does it take to earn an EdS?

Our EdS program is designed to be completed in less than two years.

How is the EdS program delivered?

The program can be completed entirely online, on­-campus in Portland, Oregon, or candidates have the ability to take some classes on-campus and some online. If pursuing the program on-­campus, most of the classes are face-­to­-face, with a few that may be delivered online.

Is there a difference between on-campus and online learning?

Many of the same proven instructional strategies that provide a rich context for learning in a traditional classroom have online counterparts. While the form of interaction and engagement may be different, the same principles apply. In addition, many would argue that a technology-mediated learning environment can provide a very rich level of learner-to-learner interaction and learner-to-instructor interaction. If you are a student in one of our online courses, you have the convenience of being able to study when your schedule permits, and you are one of a group of students who are constantly in contact with each another (and with your instructor) via the online classroom.

I would like to take courses online, but am unsure if I can do it. How does online learning work?

Many first-time online students have the same concern. There will be some adjustments needed compared to traditional in-class learning; however, we’ve found that after the first two weeks, students are often comfortable with online learning and enjoy its benefits and flexibility. You should have a basic comfort level with computers and will need to be familiar with the most commonly used web browsers (including Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari) and be able to use Microsoft Word and Microsoft PowerPoint to complete written assignments. In addition, you should be open to learning how to use any new technologies that your instructor chooses to incorporate into his/her course. And naturally, you’ll need a reliable computer and internet access to complete your coursework. We have resources we can show you before you even log in, and we offer outstanding student-focused support: you will have access to technical support and our Student Services team throughout your experience.

How do I transfer credits into the EdS program?

All transfer credit requests are submitted to the Office of the Registrar for evaluation. All transfer credit requests need to be completed during the admissions process before candidates begin coursework. Please talk to your Admissions Counselor about possibilities.

How do I know if Concordia University-Portland offers quality programs?

Four words: Nonprofit. Accredited. History. Results. Affiliated with the Concordia University System, including 9 campuses located throughout the United States, Concordia University-Portland was founded more than 100 years ago and is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Delivering a quality education through our College of Education programs is our top priority, which is why our faculty is composed of practitioners with extensive industry experience and we are constantly refreshing our curricula. Plus we offer numerous academic resources that our students can use for research purposes.

Is the GRE or other test score required?

There is no GRE score or other testing requirements necessary to enroll in our Education Specialist programs.

Can I get accepted if my grade point average (GPA) is below the program requirements?

Depending on the program to which you are applying, conditional admission may be provided to students who do not meet the GPA requirements; however, additional material and documentation will be required. GPA requirements vary by program. Please contact an enrollment specialist or admission counselor to discuss admission into your degree program of interest.

What are the advantages of starting my degree now?

The sooner you begin, the sooner you’ll be able to apply your new skills and knowledge to begin your career, advance in your current role or take on a new position. We understand the temptation of waiting for life to slow down, but does it ever? Investing in yourself and your career provides a great return on your investment! We can help you get started by streamlining the admissions process.

How can I afford a degree?

Concordia offers and accepts numerous funding options, such as school-based scholarships, grants, federal financial aid, monthly payments, military benefits, and additional promotions to those candidates who qualify. We will provide you with an enrollment specialist or admission counselor who will discuss all your funding options, and we have a dedicated financial aid team that can answer your questions regarding federally funded programs. If you are employed, we also encourage you to check with your employer to see if they offer tuition reimbursement.

Does Concordia offer post-graduate seminar credits?

Yes! Concordia University is proud to partner with Dr. Becky Bailey, an international expert, publisher in early childhood education and development and the creator of Conscious Discipline, to provide graduate seminar credit for her workshops. Learn more on our Professional Development Conferences page.